"In these days, "short lived".
Not necessarily. VLM, essentially based at LCY
(actually offically from Belgium; its official name is "Vlaamse Luchttransportmaatschappij"), has existed since 1992, even though it targets business passengers. By the end of 2003, it revealed that its situation was very good indeed, evidenced by it withdrawing poorly performing and unprofitable routes (4 in total; Düsseldorf Mönchengladbach - London City; Rotterdam - Manchester; Antwerp - Manchester; and, operated by Azzurra Air, Rotterdam - Milan) in favour of concentrating on its profitable ones. In 2003, VLM:
1) expanded its LCY
route from 5 to 9 weekday flights;
2) introduced a new four-times weekday LCY
3) operated between LCY
in its own right (instead of its former partner Luxair);
4) noted that its LCY
loads had grown by more than 3%; and
5) said that its total loads have exceeded its target by over 25,000.
Yes, its yields might have dropped slightly, but it still generally charges the highest fares between LCY
(also pretty high fares between LCY
and everywhere else), and is considering further expansion of this route (9 weekday flights to 12). I am arguing that although they have dropped slightly, VLM's yields are generally still high to very high, although it rightly decreases its fares for 'sub-optimally-timed' flights, like those at mid-day, to appeal to more flexible, discerning passengers. During peak times, i.e. those most preferred by the all-important business passengers, its fares can triple. Nice to see yield management fully at work. To illustrate yield management at work, consider these fares and times:
on Monday (23rd Feb.) at 0800, arriving into MAN
(on 24th Feb.) at 1730, arriving into LCY
Clearly, the above is on-peak and therefore optimally-timed, evidenced by it costing £253.10 including tax and charges (on VLM's website).
on Monday (23rd Feb.) at 1230, arriving into MAN
(on the 24th Feb.) at 1230, arriving into LCY
Clearly, the above is off-peak and thus sub-optimally-timed, evidenced by it costing £118.10 including tax and charges (on VLM's website).
Clearly, VLM has found its niche and is doing nicely. I foresee that this trend will continue. VLM is, in my opinion, here to stay.
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."